The richness of life lies in memories we have forgotten. — Cesare Pavese

One of my little quirks, gentle reader, is being mildly obsessive about some things. I’ll make sure several times that my keys are in my pocket before I lock the door and I’ll walk through the house again and again to make sure things are turned off before I leave. In many cases, if I have to do a certain task, the situation will see me check and re-check if whatever materials I may need to do that job are with me before I leave.

Some parts of my obsession have emerged in the way I think about the past. In a lot of ways I could chalk it up to this being Mother’s Day and the imminent anniversary of my mother’s passing (which will be four years now); the rest is definitely an offshoot from the fact that I’ve lost some friends and acquaintances over the last couple of years, which makes me feel my own mortality a little more than usual.

That leads me to the topic that’s been swirling in my mind over the past few weeks — class reunions. I’m not too vain to say 2006 will mark my 30th graduation anniversary from good ol’ CHS, and because of the aforementioned reasons I have the urge to reach out and find some way to help get things organized now before it’s too late.

Wait a minute before you think I’m volunteering for this massive task. I’m not taking this on, but I have the idea somebody knows how to reach out to our classmates. All I want to do is get the ball rolling. I’ve gotten in touch with a few, and am not adverse to getting some current info on those missing ones. I will help out as much as I can, but my current situation doesn’t allow me a lot of free time.

Over the years, on the occasions we’ve gotten together, I’ve heard from those who bypassed the earlier gatherings. Their reasons range from not being able to get away to having problems of affording the cost, plus not having the desire to see some folks. The latter is valid, since quite a few were jerks. I say to you who feel that way don’t worry about that. A surprising number of them have turned out to be solid citizens, and you would be amazed at who they are. If cost is a factor in the plans please don’t feel ashamed. We all will take care of you without any strings attached. We want to see your face, no matter what your station in life is because there is a simple truth, and as each year passes the reality of our free days being mostly behind us increases. It happens to everybody, since nothing is promised, and we never know if this time will be the last. At least consider the possibility.

The one thing I can say without any reservation is our class, for the most part, had class. During those turbulent days of early integration there were minor skirmishes, yet we generally got along. Most of us met back in junior high, whether at Drane or Collins, but that’s why we embrace each other to this day. I’m not stupid; we had fools who tried to mess things up, and nothing was perfect. The telling thing is many of us hold friendships to this day.

And that brings me back to what I was talking about earlier: my mortality. Because of the earlier mention of recent and long ago losses I have another obsession to overcome, which is my peace of mind. If somehow I can reconnect with people in my life, perhaps those losses will be diminished somewhat. Once the plans have been made and all of the ducks are in a row for the gathering I can get my mind wrapped around the celebration of our shared experience as proud graduates of Corsicana High and put those other sad feelings away for a time.


Ken Hall is a Daily Sun columnist. His column appears Thursdays and Sundays. He may be reached via e-mail at

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